Marco Rubio appeared on NBC’s “Meet the Press” yesterday, where he sparred with host Chuck Todd over his views on same-sex marriage. While Rubio would not endorse a constitutional amendment overturning the Supreme Court’s decision in Obergefell, he did say that he did not believe the decision represented “settled law.” You can watch Rubio’s appearance and read the transcript below:
CHUCK TODD: Are you going to work to overturn the same-sex marriage?
MARCO RUBIO: I disagree with it on constitutional grounds. As I have said —
TODD: But are you going to work to overturn this?
RUBIO: I think it’s bad law. And for the following reason. If you want to change the definition of marriage, then you need to go to state legislatures and get them to change it. Because states have always defined marriage. And that’s why some people get married in Las Vegas by an Elvis impersonator. And in Florida, you have to wait a couple days when you get your permit. Every state has different marriage laws. But I do not believe that the court system was the right way to do it because I don’t believe —
TODD: But it’s done now. Are you going to work to overturn it?
RUBIO: You can’t work to overturn it. What you —
TODD: Sure. You can do a constitutional amendment.
RUBIO: As I’ve said, that would be conceding that the current Constitution is somehow wrong and needs to be fixed. I don’t think the current Constitution gives the federal government the power to regulate marriage. That belongs at the state and local level. And that’s why if you want to change the definition of marriage, which is what this argument is about.
It’s not about discrimination. It is about the definition of a very specific, traditional, and age-old institution. That definitional change, if you want to change it, you have a right to petition your state legislature and your elected representatives to do it. What is wrong is that the Supreme Court has found this hidden constitutional right that 200 years of jurisprudence had not discovered and basically overturn the will of voters in Florida where over 60 percent passed a constitutional amendment that defined marriage in the state constitution as the union of one man and one woman.
TODD: So are you accepting the idea of same sex marriage in perpetuity?
RUBIO: It is the current law. I don’t believe any case law is settled law. Any future Supreme Court can change it. And ultimately, I will appoint Supreme Court justices that will interpret the Constitution as originally constructed.
Thomas Valentine is a researcher for the American Principles Project and a junior at the Franciscan University of Steubenville.